One of the largest areas of most houses that sits unused is the basement. This is often because the basement is unfinished and not suitable for living or recreational use in this unfinished state. Many homeowners nowadays are looking into refinishing their basement to take advantage of additional livable space as their family expands. In this article we’ll walk you through a few of the considerations and planning steps necessary to refinish your basement.
Adding More Usable Space to Your House
Planning for any project, especially a major home improvement project like refinishing your basement, is the most important step. Before you pick up the hammer, start out by visiting your local library to check out books on basement refinishing and learn about all the different methods and techniques available.
Next, stop by your local home improvement store which often holds a myriad of classes on various home improvement projects such as refinishing a basement. Gather your information and begin sketching out your ideas. You’ll be glad you did when you are in the middle of a project such as this!
Once you have an idea of what you want to accomplish, spend a few weekends just visiting various home improvement and builder’s supply stores to see what materials are on the market. If you are thinking of carpeting your basement, check out the various types of carpets that are available for basements where moisture concerns may be a problem.
Many manufacturers will specifically provide detailed specification sheets on various products you can use for basement refinishing, if you don’t see such information in the store ask at the service desk where they can often print off spec sheets and other information.
As you get closer to starting the basement refinishing project be sure to investigate local building codes. Though our ideas may look great on paper, there may be local codes that will alter how you have to do certain aspects of the project. This is especially true when it comes to plumbing and electrical work. If you are in doubt of any local codes consult local firms that may be willing to work with you for a small fee to outline necessary steps and any permits that may be necessary.
Finally, prepare a final design and get accurate measurements and drawings. This may take time, and again may involve using an outside resource, but a project is only good upon which its foundation is based – in our case the foundation is our plans.
Do it yourself basement refinishing can be a rewarding project that will add value and space to your house, but it does take time. Expect to spend at least 1-2 years on this project depending on the size of your basement and available time to work on it.